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Acquiring the tools to collaborate better

Employees at Bayer MaterialScience (BMS) are using social software to create a “community” that draws together groups of individuals based on mutual collaborative focus, business need or interest. The company, which is part of the Bayer Group headquartered in Germany, chose IBM Lotus Connections to help improve collaboration and information sharing among its 14,300 employees worldwide.

BMS is using the solution in line with a Bayer Group-wide initiative, called the Personalized WorkPlace Program, to upgrade Bayer’s office and collaboration environment. With Lotus Connections, employees can more easily find experts in specific areas of the business and can collaborate on projects with coworkers who are located in different parts of the world, according to IBM.

Kurt De Ruwe, chief information officer at BMS, says, "The power of Connections is that the knowledge sharing process is totally embedded in the tool. When a person adds a piece of information, it is automatically linked to other information available in communities, wikis or blogs. Lotus Connections 3.0 has even increased those capabilities. You can now also see what areas of interest you have in common with other people, what communities you share or what people and information topics you are following. Connections 3.0 comes with other enhancements that empower users even more to share and find relevant information."

The solution provides such collaborative tools as blogs, wikis, profiles, bookmarks, communities, forums, file sharing and activities. Those tools help business professionals develop, nurture and remain in contact with a network of colleagues, respond quickly to business opportunities and discuss and refine ideas, IBM says.

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